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April 10, 2015

A very, very short update as I'm still recalibrating from the Heresies launch (read: two-day hangover). You might not have seen this piece I wrote for the John Murray blog, all about à la carte Catholicism and the Irish psyche. You've seen it now, right? Go on. Have a...

February 3, 2015

First published on Where's Grandad, June 2012

 

There was a boy, once. I was six and so was he. We were in First Class together, back in the days when First Class meant making your Holy Communion. With that massive ecclesiastical millstone around our necks, he’d be sent...

February 3, 2015

Written August 2009

 

As it’s Builders’ Holidays in Ireland at the moment (a nationally-recognised breather for those in the construction industry; that should give you some clue as to how ingrained in the Irish psyche is the practise of throwing together the odd stone w...

February 3, 2015

Written March 2009

 

Cute means smart, and smart means irreverent, along with saucy, which does not mean sexy, nor does foxy, which means ginger. Desperate does not mean desperate, but rather emphasises any word it precedes, as does awful, which does not mean terrible, w...

February 3, 2015

Written March 2009

 

I don't know if naming your house something equally personal and ludicrous is an Irish hobby, or if it's one practised in many cultures; certainly there seems to be some sort of pandemic writhing its way through our provinces. I wrote a quotation yes...

February 2, 2015

Written February 2009

 

 

The most heated argument I ever had in a taxi was not on the arse of a disappointing Valentine's Day, or with a drunken friend howling hyperbole, or with an overcharging tit of a driver, or any of the usual stuff. It was Christmas 12 months back,...

February 2, 2015

Written January 2007

 

 

I was over at me mammy's last night, for the annual Twelve Candles festivities.

 

The Twelve Candles is an odd tradition, where we light twelve small, slim . . . well, candles, assign a name of a family member to each of them, wait till they extingu...

February 1, 2015

Written March 2009

 

 As the song I'd never heard before the Sopranos bled itself dry goes, I'm ‘just a small-town girl’. Or a deadened-little-village girl. Or maybe even a Well-there's-two-pubs-a-Shop-Local-and-the-parish-priest-has-a-Japanese-car kind of girl. Whatever...

February 1, 2015

Written March 2009

 

I was walking past the local the other day - and when I say, ‘the local’, please note that it's not actually my local, seeing as I live in Cork now, and also can't afford to drink outside my own kitchen - when something stopped me in my tracks.

 

There...

February 1, 2015

Written January 2007

 

 

There was that terrific urban myth that the Inuit peoples had a gloriously high number of words for ‘snow’. It's been debunked over and over, which is a great pity, because it's an only gorgeous assumption. How wonderful to have that richness of l...

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